Highly successful PA Speedweek goes into the record books

Bryan Householder
For The York Dispatch

The 32nd annual Red Robin PA Sprint Car Speedweek wrapped up on Sunday evening at Selinsgrove.  It was a very successful week for racers and fans in the local area.

This year’s Speedweek saw 84 different drivers attempt to compete over the 10 days. Nine of the 10 races were completed, with the first Sunday show at BAPS Motor Speedway the only race to fall victim to rain.

In all there were 11 drivers who competed in all nine of the races.  Drivers at this year's Speedweek came from three countries and 11 states to compete in at least some of the shows. Drivers this year ranged in age from 15 to 63.

At some point during the week, fields included an Australian, Eddie Lumbar who came from New South Wales to fill in one of his bucket list items. Lumbar is a veteran racer who at age 63 was the oldest driver to compete during the week.  He attended the first seven shows before a broken oil pump ended his week early.

The Canadian entrant during part of the week was Skylar Gee, who set a fast time at Lincoln’s Monday show but didn’t stick around for the whole week.

The 15-year-old competitor was Oklahoma’s Ryan Timms, who was not allowed to participate in some of the races because of age limits by track insurance companies. Timms came away with a best finish of ninth in the final race of the series at Selinsgrove.

Fields included two current and one past NASCAR Cup series drivers. Defending Cup champion Kyle Larson and Christopher Bell each competed at the midweek shows, with Larson gaining two second place finishes and Bell garnering one top five.

Brent Marks is shown here after his win Saturday night at Lincoln Speedway.

The former Cup driver to compete also owns World of Outlaws and All Star sprint car titles. That would be Dave Blaney, who made two midweek appearances. Blaney is, of course, the father of current Cup series driver Ryan Blaney.

Justin Peck, who ended the week second in Speedweek points, is an All-Star regular who recently won the Ohio Speedweek crown. Western PA Speedweek champion A J Flick also competed during PA Speedweek.

One thing none of these drivers did was win during this year’s PA Speedweek. Dillsburg’s Anthony Macri won the first two races, California’s Rico Abreu won a midweek show at Grandview, and former PA Speedweek champion Danny Dietrich won the last race of the week at Selinsgrove.

The remaining five races were all won by Brent Marks. In fact, Marks put together a remarkable Speedweek. He had podium finishes in all nine races. In addition to his five wins, Marks had two seconds and two third.

As the Speedweek champion, Marks earned $6,000. He also won the Selinsgrove Motors bonus of $5,000 for finishing in the top 10 in all of the races.  At Selinsgrove, he took the $500 Lelands.com Knock Out bonus for winning his heat race from the fourth starting spot. Add in his Fast Time award that night and all of his race purses, and Marks earn almost $70,000 for the week.

Marks’ five wins on the week equals the Speedweek record set by Stevie Smith in 2015. His four late-week wins in a row is a new Speedweek record.

This weekend: With the conclusion of Speedweek, things settle down a bit with a pretty much regular weekend of racing in the area.

The super late models and USAC East Coast wingless 360 sprints are scheduled for Thursday at the Bloomsburg Fairgrounds.

Friday finds the 410 sprints and the USAC East Coast group competing at Williams Grove, while super late models headline at Bedford.

On Saturday, the 410 sprints and 358 sprints are joined by the Classic cars at Lincoln, while Port Royal hosts the 410 sprints, super late models and limited late models.

Selinsgrove offers up the 360 sprint car National Open on Saturday with support from URC.  The PASS 305 sprints also compete.

Brent Marks

BAPS Motor Speedway offers the super sportsman, the Smokey Frye Tribute limited late model 50, street stocks and extreme stocks on its Saturday show.

Path Valley has wingless super sportsman and limited late models on Saturday, while Hagerstown offers late model sportsman, Mid Atlantic modifieds, pure stocks and hobby stocks.

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